Category Archives: Novellas

Crowdfunding for a Song: The Music of Duo Ex Machina

Can you help me fill my Ko-Fi cup?

I grew up influenced by musicals, and that may be why I now write so many stories with music in them.

As a child I learned piano and though that fell by the wayside – partly because my family kept moving house and moving the cheap old piano along with us was a bit of a palaver – I’ve always enjoyed playing around with lyrics and songwriting.

In the 80s, when I discovered fandom and film music, I ended up collaborating with Fiona Thompson (nee Undy) on a Blake’s 7 filktape called Voices from the Past.

Decades have passed since then. I still can’t play the piano, or really sing, but fandom led me back to songwriting once more. I wrote lyrics for an alternative universe Sherlock Holmes series and then started writing lyrics into other stories.

I wrote lyrics for songs relating to the Witches of Tyne series. Then I wrote them for the first Duo Ex Machina novella, Fly By Night, to go alongside the lyrics of songs by About Six Feet (used with their permission)

Then a few years ago, spurred on by those fan-inspired lyrics on AO3 and how much people liked them, I wrote more and more music. (I’ve since dragged both Blake’s 7 and Holmes filk into the worlds of Kitty and Cadaver and Duo Ex Machina.)

Further novellas in the Duo Ex Machina series – Sacrifice, Number One Fan, Kiss and Cry and the current (and final) story, Little Star, all contain songs that I wrote, because it’s easier to do that yourself than get permission to use other lyrics. Also because I love it!

It’s been my delight in recent years to work with Jess Harris of Bronze to bring Kitty songs to life in their performances and recordings.

I’m now aiming to work with another musician – music producer Joshua King – to transform the Duo Ex Machina songs from lyrics on a page to songs in your ear!

To this end, I’ve set up as Ko-Fi account to raise funds to pay for studio time, singers and musicians. I’ll be updating the site each week with lyrics, my a cappella versions of the melodies and examples of words-to-music that have come out of previous collaborations!

If you have a few dollars to spare and would like to support new music in Melbourne, you can donate below!

Fundraising through Dangerous Charm

If you prefer to wear your support, I’m also putting the proceeds of any jewellery sales from Dangerous Charm (which includes jewellery inspired by Kitty and Cadaver and Duo Ex Machina) directly into the song-making bank!

Cover Reveal: Duo Ex Machina 5 – Little Star

I’m so pleased to reveal to you the cover of the fifth and final novella of the Duo Ex Machina series, Little Star.

Willsin Rowe has designed the covers for each of the novellas, and he’s brought us to the end with this delight.

About Little Star

Families can be thorny, especially when the closet’s full of skeletons. It’s 2019, and Frank and Milo are realising a dream they only recently realised they had – fatherhood. But they’re not only gaining a daughter – they’re inheriting a some serious issues from little Lyra’s extended family. Milo is also discovering his own family history isn’t quite what he’s been told.

Parenthood. Always full of surprises…

Little Star is currently being serialised on my Patreon for supporters from the lowest tier upwards – so if you don’t want to wait until that’s finished, you can pledge your monthly support now for two chapters a month (and more if you pledge at higher levels) and then the finalised ebook on completion.

(As a bonus, if you join my Patreon now, you’ll get the first four novellas as a sign-up reward!)

New! Duo Ex Machina: Kiss and Cry

My first new release for 2020 is the fourth novella in my Duo Ex Machina series, Kiss and Cry. Now that it has finished being serialised on my Patreon, the book is available to the general public!

Set in 2014, Kiss and Cry sees musicians and life partners Frank Capriano and Milo Bertolone facing new challenges. Milo is taking part in a celebrity ice dancing show for charity; Frank is a busy music producer. They’re both working too hard and losing touch with the love that has kept them strong for so long. At the same time, some odd things are going on with other participants in Icing It! What new and unlooked-for danger threatens them now, and is it worse than the miserable estrangement they’re going through?

Get Kiss and Cry:

Read up and find links for the previous Duo Ex Machina series here or you can become a subscriber to my Patreon at any level and you’ll get all four Duo Ex Machina ebook novellas to date as an immediate reward!

And for people who are already fans, you might like to look at my Duo Ex Machina-inspired jewellery at Dangerous Charm!

Cover Reveal: Duo Ex Machina – Kiss and Cry

I’m delighted to reveal the cover for my upcoming fourth Duo Ex Machina novella, Kiss and Cry.

Set in 2014, Kiss and Cry sees musicians and life partners Frank Capriano and Milo Bertolone facing new challenges. Milo is taking part in a celebrity ice dancing show for charity; Frank is a busy music producer. They’re both working too hard and losing touch with the love that has kept them strong for so long. At the same time, some odd things are going on with other participants in Icing It! What new and unlooked-for danger threatens them now, and is it worse than the miserable estrangement they’re going through?

Kiss and Cry is currently being serialised for my $3 supporters on Patreon. That will finish in February 2020, when all Patrons will get the book as one of their regular awards. Soon after, it will be available for general sale.

In the meantime, this is the lovely cover by Willsin Rowe, who has created all the new series covers to date.